iTEC: Advising, Tutoring, and Mentoring program
Merrimack College was recently awarded a prestigious grant from the National Science Foundation. This project, Innovation through Engineering and Computer Science (iTEC), aims to increase the retention and graduation rates of Engineering and Computer Science majors. iTEC includes four initiatives to support student success.
The Advising, Tutoring, and Mentoring (ATM) initiative is a program through iTEC that is available to students as an outlet to assist them in their coursework. Students are placed in cohorts led by a Peer Mentor. The cohorts consist of ten Mentees who are first year students. The cohorts are chosen based on major to help with advising and questions within the major. The peer mentors help foster a community among first year students and a sense of belonging with School of Science and Engineering. The peer mentors provide a positive role model, tutoring, and general advising. The ATM program hosts events such as career exploration and alumni nights to expand student knowledge within the field. ATM also provides workshops for students on important success skills such as time management. The events and workshop also help the students develop self efficacy skills.
ATM also provides free tutoring sessions held in Mendel classrooms Monday through Thursday 6-8 pm. Students are not required to schedule an appointment before arrival as there is an open door policy. During tutoring sessions, the ATM program always has two qualified peer mentors on staff to provide tutoring in math courses, the introduction to engineering courses, computer science, and general science classes. The peer mentors are upper class engineering and computer science students.
Additionally, peer mentors also attend a required freshman recitation project session that corresponds to the freshman required introduction to engineering course. The peer mentors help guide interdisciplinary projects (engineering and computer science). This year each team is building a wind turbine.